Ring of Honor Television is in the books for another week. The company is building towards it’s 15th Anniversary Pay Per View event where the winner of the Decade of Excellence Tournament will face off against Ring of Honor World Champion Adam Cole. How did the show hold up this week?
The show opened with a great recap of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 11 show where Kyle O’Reily was defeated by Adam Cole from The Bullet Club, winning the Ring of Honor World Championship in the process.
One thing I love about Ring of Honor is the working relationships they have with other companies like New Japan Pro Wrestling and CMLL in Mexico. Ring of Honor is not a big company in the United States so to have their world championship competed on a stage that rivals Wrestlemania says a lot for what these partnerships can bring. And when you put the rockets onto a performer as talented as Adam Cole, you can really do no wrong.
Later in the show, Adam Cole joined Kevin Kelly on commentary for the match between Jay Briscoe and Jay Lethal in the semi-finals of the Decade of Excellence Tournament. The tournament is a chance for long time Ring of Honor stars to fight for a chance to face Adam Cole at Ring of Honor's 15th Anniversary Pay Per View. The match between Lethal and Briscoe was a hard fought match from bell to bell, which Jay Lethal ended up winning. The only issue I have is with how Jay Lethal seems to be tossed to the way side after he lost the World Championship last year. His reign as champion was longer than any other wrestler in ROH history yet since losing, we’ve not heard much from him on television. Jay Lethal is a great talent that needs to have more focus on their shows.
Another aspect I enjoyed was the triple threat tag team match that opened the show. What I enjoyed was the appearance of The Young Bucks on commentary. They put over the talent in the ring, didn’t bad mouth them, yet when the match was over, you knew that Matt and Nick Jackson were two cocky SOB’s after they super kicked The Tempura Boys, the team that won the match. The Young Bucks are a polarizing team. You’re not going to watch a Young Bucks match and pretend you’re watching wrestling from back in the Jim Crockett days. Yet wrestling needs different kinds of acts to survive. Sure, they’re having some fun at the expense of the business with how they lay out their matches. One analogy I give to wrestlers is that they are very much like magicians. You don’t watch David Copperfield and think he has made a contract with the devil to make the Statue of Liberty disappear. Yet you know he’s put in a lot of hard work to make his illusions appear realistic.
To me, The Young Bucks are a lot like Penn and Teller. Penn and Teller have fun with magic yet you still recognize them for being world class magicians. They are able to pull the curtain back while still amazing their audiences with what they do. The Young Bucks to me fit in this category.
Overall, the show was enjoyable. I wouldn’t call it a classic by any means so if you do happen to miss it, you aren’t missing anything crucial. Yet if you’re looking for an enjoyable escape for an hour, you can catch the latest Ring of Honor Television episodes on the FITE TV app, available in the App Store, on your local syndicated Sinclair Broadcasting stations, or Wednesday Nights on Comet Television.